Hercules Engine News
by Glenn Karch
This month's article will vary somewhat from the normal format in that it is a show report. The Classic Iron Show was recently held at Evansville, Indiana, June 12-14. There were some 500 gas engines and a lot of other related equipment. Included were several Hercules, Economy, ARCO and Jaeger engines.
There was a 1 1/2 HP model F #260537, with the seldom-seen two piece main frame. Such engines were originally built to be broken down into lightweight enough pieces for easy transport into remote areas for installation.
There was a 12 HP model E #248012 Economy on a drop cart owned by the Klueg family of Evansville. It was belted to a weatherboard saw. A weatherboard saw splits a 1 X 6 or 1 X 7 into two nice tapered boards (if everything works right.)
A reunion of sorts took place, too. In the November 1997 issue of GEM there was a story about "The oldest Known 2 HP Sparta Economy Model A Engine." It belongs to Dan Moss, and he brought it all the way from Watertown, Wisconsin, to the Classic Iron Show. Paul Hartman from Smyrna, Tennessee, was there too, and he also has a 2 HP model A. He and Dan met for the first time. They had been corresponding by phone and letter as Dan worked to restore his engine.
Another very nice older Sparta Economy was on display by Buford Conover of Champaign, Illinois. It was a 4 HP model B #2639, another example of a "not too plentiful" engine.
To round out the Sparta Economy group was a 6 HP model CX #29605 exhibited by Doug Couchenour of New Salisbury, Indiana.
A non-Hercules event caused a lot of excitement at the Classic Iron Show. Brian Schroeder of Graysville, Illinois, brought in a load of some sixty engines to sell in the consignment area. It was quite an assortment ranging from Maytags to a 6 HP IHC model M. They were priced to sell, and sell they did! After two days only four engines remained unsold. People lined up over an hour before the consignment opening and when it opened, the mad rush was on. It was quite a sight to see. There was a 3 HP Hercules in the load. Mike Hasting of Mt. Vernon, Indiana, had been wanting a Hercules engine and he was the lucky buyer.
Fords, Fordsons, cars, trucks and tractors were featured.
Don Wasser of Brownstown, Illinois, took advantage of the opportunity and drove a 1949 Ford 8N tractor 20 hours to get to the show and then back home again. He pulled a trailer and camped along the way. He said that he just wanted to do it.
Coming up next time will be a report from Coolspring, Pennsylvania. There were a lot of Hercules-related things there, and there were opportunities to get several very interesting photographs that you will get to see.